The Menninger Clinic is a highly-regarded mental-health facility in Topeka, Kansas. Their mission, it says here, includes "applying knowledge to promote mental health." To this end, I assume, they sent me a "complimentary bookmark" which contains an abbreviated version of this mission statement, and a little table, signed by William C. Menninger, MD, which lists "The Criteria of Emotional Maturity". Let's see how Your Humble Scribe does on this seven-point test:

  1. The ability to deal constructively with reality
    Reality and I are on speaking terms, more or less, but neither of us is exactly thrilled with the other.
  2. The capacity to adapt to change
    Despite my somewhat stodgy reputation, I've gone with far more flow than anyone suspects.
  3. A relative freedom from symptoms that are produced by tensions and anxieties
    No chance on this one; in fact, I'm just about due for another Ativan.
  4. The capacity to find more satisfaction in giving than receiving
    I suppose this is true, given my general belief that I receive very little to begin with.
  5. The capacity to relate to other people in a consistent manner with mutual satisfaction and helpfulness
    I don't understand this one. Does he mean "in a manner consistent with mutual satisfaction and helpfulness"? If so, I am generally considered somewhat helpful, in a grudging sort of way.
  6. The capacity to sublimate, to direct one's instinctive hostile energy into creative and constructive outlets
    You're soaking in it.
  7. The capacity to love
    Um, no comment. Yet.

Evidently it's time I booked a room in Topeka. I hear it's just wonderful up there for about twenty minutes in early fall.

The Vent

8 September 2000

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 Copyright © 2000 by Charles G. Hill